Bayern Munich midfield ace Michael Ballack has confessed that Germany are not among the favourites to lift the European Championship trophy this summer.

Despite helping his country to the World Cup final just two years ago, Ballack revealed that he does not think Germany are capable of success in Portugal.

“Of course we want to play a prominent role at the European Championships and challenge for the title if at all possible,” said Ballack.

“But at the moment I don’t see us being one of the top contenders.

“We are just not at the stage where we can say we are going out on the pitch to become European or world champions.

“In order to do this we need to grow together more as a team and also have our top players back from injury,” added the 27-year-old.

Despite his reservations, Ballack denied that Germany had not become a second rate international team.

“That’s not true. We proved that at the World Cup in Japan and South Korea,” he said.